Merkinch Nature Reserve

Merkinch Nature Reserve

Wildlife on your doorstep

Tucked away on the fringes of Inverness, the Merkinch Nature Reserve offers a tranquil escape into nature. This little known but greatly admired area of Scotland’s wilderness teems with life, set within a landscape of freshwater, seawater and tidal habitats. It is only around a ten-minute drive from the Kingsmills Hotel, yet it transports you to a world which feels like miles away. 

An Oyster Catcher bird.

Perfect for bird enthusiasts

Merkinch Nature Reserve is the only Local Nature Reserve in the Highlands, and is a haven for bird enthusiasts. The range of diverse habitats attract a wide variety of bird species, making it an ideal spot for birdwatching. Look out for herons, oystercatchers, redshanks, and a host of other waterfowl and waders. During migration seasons, the reserve becomes a temporary home for many rare and fascinating birds. Taking in a total of 54.7 hectares, there are plenty of opportunities to spot a variety of interesting animals, birds and plants.

Not only are there plentiful birds, but mammals make this area their home too. You might be lucky enough to spot an otter frolicking at the edge of the water, or even a seal basking in the sun. The Moray Firth is a well known area for spotting dolphins, so be sure to keep an eye out further into the waters too. Furthermore, the Muirtown Pools are a series of pools connected to the sea, and provide a range of habitats including reed beds, bogs, scrub.

Sunset at Merkinch Nature Reserve.

Getting to Merkinch Nature Reserve

Getting to Merkinch Nature Reserve from the Kingsmills Hotel is simple. If you have a car, it is just a ten-minute drive north through Inverness to the shores of the Beauly Firth. 

If you have a bike, it’s a 12 minute cycle along the National Cycle Route 7. It’s also possible to walk there, taking just under an hour as you pass through Inverness City Centre, meaning there are plenty of opportunities to stop for a break and a coffee en route!

Stay at Kingsmills near Merkinch Nature Reserve

The Merkinch Nature Reserve is a great place to visit when staying at the Kingsmills Hotel. It’s a thriving ecosystem that plays a vital role in local conservation efforts. Whether you’re a life-long nature lover or looking for some peace and tranquility in the wild, then plan your visit to this hidden gem in Inverness today. Discover the natural beauty and tranquility that Merkinch has to offer. 

Enjoy the great outdoors

Turn your holiday at The Kingsmills Hotel into an exhilarating outdoor adventure. Give us a call on +44 (0) 1463 257 100 or get in touch below for more information on things to do in Inverness.

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